In film class, we had to make a narrative film. Me and my partner decided to do our film based on my flash fiction.
In Design, we has to create a hybrid animal based on our narrative character. It also had to incorporate 2-point perspective.
My English flash fiction story that served as the inspiration for this illustration was about a thumb wrestler named Boris. Boris dreams about winning the Nation Thumb Wrestling Championships, and does nothing but train nonstop for this competition. However, his dreams are dashed one day when, imagining himself winning the competition, he accidentally runs into a rusty staple and has to get his thumb amputated.
To create this illustration, I began with sketching out my ideas for which animals would best represent Boris. Afterwards, I picked pictures of the animals I chose in the correct poses and used the Pen tool to create the outline of the hybrid. I made the background with one-point linear perspective. To select what animals I included my hybrid, I considered my character’s personality and traits. In the end, I decided on a hermit crab, to represents his reclusive personality, a cheetah, to represent his speediness, and a gorilla, to represent his great strength and opposable thumbs. The background of the picture is a wrestling ring, inside a gym. On the wall of the gym is a poster for the competition Boris dreams to win. I chose a wrestling ring because it seemed like the perfect place to host a thumb wrestling competition, and added the poster on the background to make the thumb wrestling theme clear. Overall, I’m very pleased with my work, especially because it took a lot of time to complete. However, if I were to do it differently, I would add more details to my background to create a more realistic scene.
In English, we were assigned to write a story story with no dialogue. My story is about a obsessive thumb wrestler.
A Tragedy in Two Thumbs
All he dreamt about was thumbs. Long thumbs, brown thumbs, wrinkled thumbs. Someone holding a coffee cup, painting their nails. Every thumb he had seen came back to him in his dreams. The lady at the gym whose long, limber thumbs grasped the dumbbells perfectly. The little boy picking his nose at the DMV, tapping at a phone screen with his other finger. The only time Boris wasn’t obsessing over the only opposable finger on his hand was in the few moments after waking up, when his brain went foggy and his thumb dreams faded away. But as soon as he saw the calendar taped on the ceiling above his bed, Boris’s life was all thumbs, all the time. The calender was crowded with red X’s. Boris reached for the pen beside his bed and marked off today, one X closer to the most important day of his life.
The National Thumb Wrestling Championships.
And thus Boris’s day began, consumed by his profession. He hopped out of bed, thumbs already moving like they have a mind of their own. Side swipe, backhand, jab, push forward and pull back. His mind slips into a daydream.
The announcer shouts his name in his grand, booming voice:
BORIS THE BULLDOZER, INTO THE RING.
The crowd screams around him, but Boris doesn’t notice. All that he sees is the thumbs – his thumb and his opponent’s, Victor the Viking, the greatest thumb wrestler in history. The undefeated champ.
He’s already planning his first move. But so is Boris. Victor strikes first, a forward jab. He’s fast, but Boris is faster. He deflects the jab and goes for him with a quick sideswipe, but Victor moves out just in time. Boris falters, unsure.
Victor pins him. Crap. He feels like he’s drowning, his thumb struggling for breath. The ref starts to count, and the numbers echo in his head like a death sentence.
1, 2, 3, 4 ………..
No, he can’t lose this. This is his life. He forces his thumb from Victor’s iron grip, with only a few seconds left. Pin. He has Victor’s thumb now, and he’ll die before he lets go. This time, the ref’s count sounds like a love song in his ear, a sweet melody bringing him to tears.
His thumbponent is defeated.
Boris hears the crowd go crazy, and he looks around expecting to see adoring fans. The sight that greets him is only his kitchen, the cheers just his microwave telling him his Eggo© waffle is done heating up. He grabs the waffle and heads out the door. He needs his thumbs free, so he shoves his breakfast in his mouth and keeps walking. He misses his cheering fans and championship trophy, so he closes his eyes to bring the moment back.
It works and he’s suddenly back in the ring. The sight of Victor the Viking broken and defeated only elates him more. Nothing could bring him higher, nothing could take this away from him. And then he sees it, and his heart almost stops beating. The Golden Thumb. A two-foot tall, gold, hyperrealistic thumb with a plaque that says:
WINNER OF THE 2017 CHAMPIONSHIP GAMES
BORIS THE BULLDOZER
Boris reached out to stroke the gilded phalange, his finger grabbing needily. Suddenly a burst of pain clouded his vision. He spun around, expecting to find the Viking ready for a rematch. But all he saw was a regular street, with boring houses and no thumb trophies in sight. But the pain didn’t disappear, and it took Boris a moment to locate the source. His breath stopped.
No. It couldn’t be.
The blood dripped on the gray sidewalk like paint. His limp wrist hung, still processing. The thing that Boris valued more than his own life was maimed, imperfect. The attacker was no Viking, but instead a lone staple protruding from a lamppost. Boris tumbled to the ground like a ballerina, a wounded soldier.
5 Months Later
The dogs wouldn’t stop pulling. Every single one was going in a different direction, stopping to sniff a bush or mysterious puddle. At least he could walk dogs with only one thumb. He still had nightmares, could still hear the doctor saying “tetanus” in his cold, indifferent voice. Sometimes he still caught himself moving his stump around, a phantom thumb fighting its invisible battle.
Boris kept his head down, concentrated on the dogs instead of his broken dreams. Something caught the corner of his eye. A poster pasted on a lamppost.
JONES COUNTY REGIONAL ARM WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIPS.
My narrative project from English, Design, and Film was based on a flash fiction I wrote in English about a thumb wrestler. It follows Boris, an obsessive thumb wrestler who only cares about becoming the best thumb wrestler ever. For film, I turned this story into movie along with my partner. In Design, I turned my main character into an animal hybrid using 2-point perspective.